“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” — Psalms 27:1
Wow these past two weeks have been incredible! We have continued to see miracles as we strive to follow and reflect the guiding light of Christ.
Two weeks ago we went to the temple. There, I was able to receive more light and inspiration for myself as well as for the people here in this area. I love the spirit that I can feel in such a peaceful, sacred place. It’s a nice change when living in one of the busiest cities in the U.S. In the temple I was reminded of my personal divine worth and potential, and I received a burst of hope for the next coming months. I know the Lord is aware of every tiny facet of this work. He is so wonderful.
What I wanted to focus on this week is how we can discern and follow the Holy Ghost. Often times we call this receiving revelation. Elder David A. Bednar, a member of the Twelve Apostles, describes revelation as receiving light. I love this analogy he makes, because when I look back on the times that I have received guidance, I feel as though a light bulb went off in my mind.
These past two weeks, I can pick out a few very distinct moments when I had that “light bulb effect” happen to me, and as a result, we saw miracles.
One of those miracles has to do with a dropped investigator named Cesar de la Cruz. My past companion, Hermana Gogarty, told me all about this man. She told me that he had a baptismal date, and that they had filled up the font for him on his baptism day, but he never showed up. She was devastated, because afterwards, it seemed as though he had vanished off the face of the planet. Ever since I got here, I have been constantly thinking of Cesar and wondering what happened to him.
Well, on one unsuccessful night of knocking, I turned to Hermana Tripp at about 8:30 and said, “we should go see if Cesar is home!” Cesar rents out a garage from another family, and every time we’ve past by during the day, no one had answered. We decided to give it one last try.
When we got to the house, the family that lived upstairs opened the window and told us that Cesar didn’t live there. We thanked them for letting us know, but something told me that they were lying to us. I knocked on the garage door. No answer. Knocked again. Nothing. Then as we turned to walk away, right there in front of us stood a man with groceries in his hand fumbling for his keys. I said, “Hola, como esta?” He replied, still staring at the keys, “Bien y usted?” “Muy bien — como se llama?” “Cesar de la Cruz.” “CESAR DE LA CRUZ!? HOLA MUCHO GUSTO!!!!” Haha I was so excited. We found him! He asked us for our number and we gave it to him. He explained that he hadn’t had time because he worked all day and didn’t usually get home until around 9 (which is when we have to go home). He wasn’t able to make it to his baptism because his boss wouldn’t let him leave in time, and he felt embarrassed that he missed it. I don’t know what will happen with Cesar, or if we will teach him again, but I do know that we were definitely guided to this man’s house that night.
Another example happened just a few days ago. I was on exchanges with Hermana Myers, our STL who also served in this area for 8 months until I came. She knows everybody who’s anybody in this area — seriously. We had a scheduled appointment with a potential investigator, but when we knocked on the door, he wasn’t home. I looked at my planner, and saw that our back-up plan was la familia Reyes, a family who all had baptismal dates until they found anti-mormon literature. Hermana Myers asked where I thought we should go. I told her we should go visit the Reyes family. She and my last companion Hermana Gogarty used to teach them. I explained to her on the way there that we had tried contacting them at least once a week my entire transfer, and nothing. However, when we got out of the car and approached the door, this time the door was already open! We rang the doorbell and they invited us in! When we walked in, they saw Hermana Myers and kept repeating over and over, “Que milagro! Que milagro!!!” It truly was a miracle. I was able to get to know them better, and also share a message with them. They told us they were coming to church this week, and they did! They also set up another time for us to come by. I am so hoping my companion and I can help this family renew their faith in the gospel.
On top of these two stories, I have some news. I am going to be training a brand new missionary this transfer! I am so excited and also very nervous. Training is a huge responsibility and requires a ton of humility. But I know that as I continue to rely on the Savior, and strive to follow His guidance, my companion and I will continue to see this area grow.
Thank you all so much for your love and support, and I’m sorry I don’t have enough time to write to each of you individually!
Les quiero mucho!